A Word on Reliability

Marc Prieur has been around writing about hardware for as long as I can remember (think back to the old school Tom days). Late last year he published some particularly controversial numbers on his website: failure rates of various PC components according to a French etailer. Among the components were SSDs and the numbers are below:

SSD Failure Rates - Hardware.fr
  Intel Corsair Crucial Kingston OCZ
Failure Percentage 0.59% 2.17% 2.25% 2.39% 2.93%

I should add that the numbers Marc published were accurate (confirmed by some of the manufacturers involved), although they don’t paint the complete picture of world wide failure rates - they are an important sample to look at.

Other than Intel, none of the companies listed in that article were particularly pleased with the numbers.

I mentioned earlier that the 510 would go through Intel’s extensive validation testing, just like any other Intel product. Presumably this means that the SSD 510 should have similarly low failure rates in the field (unless there’s something horribly wrong with the Marvell controller that is). Compatibility should also be a strong point of the SSD 510 due to Intel’s stringent internal testing.

Note that I am separating reliability and compatibility from drive longevity. There’s typically a good correlation between high random write performance and low write amplification. The Intel SSD 510 doesn’t have particularly high random write performance, and in turn should suffer from fairly high write amplification in highly random workloads.

I’ve already proved in the past that at 5,000 p/e cycles there’s no cause for worry for a normal desktop user. The likelihood that you’ll wear out all of your NAND within the next 5 years is very, very low. However I will say that when faced with enterprise workloads you’re going to have to pay much closer attention to write amplification and spare area than you would on say a SandForce drive.

The Test

CPU Intel Core i7 965 running at 3.2GHz (Turbo & EIST Disabled)
Intel Core i7 2600K running at 3.4GHz (Turbo & EIST Disabled) - for AT SB 2011, AS SSD & ATTO
Motherboard: Intel DX58SO (Intel X58)
Intel H67 Motherboard
Chipset: Intel X58 + Marvell SATA 6Gbps PCIe Intel H67
Chipset Drivers: Intel 9.1.1.1015 + Intel IMSM 8.9
Intel 9.1.1.1015 + Intel RST 10.2
Memory: Qimonda DDR3-1333 4 x 1GB (7-7-7-20)
Video Card: eVGA GeForce GTX 285
Video Drivers: NVIDIA ForceWare 190.38 64-bit
Desktop Resolution: 1920 x 1200
OS: Windows 7 x64
Intel’s SSD 510 Powered by Marvell Random Read/Write Speed
POST A COMMENT

128 Comments

View All Comments

  • someguy11 - Wednesday, March 02, 2011 - link

    Hey Anand
    I've been reading your SSD bibles for years, searching and keeping abreast of the latest SSD news so I'd know the best before taking the plunge.

    Well, I took the plunge after reading some reviews of the Samsung SSDs elsewhere. The price of a 60GB ($90) was too hard to pass up. In short I'm happy. Very happy.

    Why dont any Samsungs appear in these exhaustive SSD lists? Do you have plans to do so?
    Reply
  • sequoia464 - Wednesday, March 02, 2011 - link

    I have to agree with some of the earlier comments on the size of the drives tested. Hopefully you can promptly add the Vertex 3 and this new Intel in the 120 GB flavors to your SSD BENCH when they are available. The larger capacity drives are just unafordable for quite a few of us, at least to me anyway.

    Too bad the manufacturers don't send you the smaller capacity drives as well initially, although I understand why they don't. All of the Vertex3 results that I have seen so far are on the 240 GB drive also.

    As comprehensive as the SSD bench currently is I'm sure that the 120 Gb versions will eventually be in there.

    Thanks for the review.
    Reply
  • Rasta_Cook - Thursday, March 03, 2011 - link

    It would be really nice if the corsair performance 3 could be benched and compared to intel 510, both use the same controller, however the corsair p3 has barely any reviews online even though it has been available for a while now. Reply
  • yekn - Sunday, March 06, 2011 - link

    actually Corsair P3 has the same level high sequential number and poor random number, which lead me to believe P3 and 510 are using the same firmware with different Nand.
    looks like Intel not only uses 3rd party controller but also 3rd party firmware.
    Reply
  • Ryomitomo - Thursday, March 03, 2011 - link

    I would also like to find out how this SSD perform against the rest. This drive had been on the market for a while now. Thank you! Reply
  • RealGsus - Thursday, March 03, 2011 - link

    Hi guys,

    I really hope you can help me out. I'm putting together a new system and am looking for a new SSD. I've been awaiting the arrival of the new intel drive, but I'm a little disappointed with its performance.

    So I'm wondering which would be the best choice for a pretty much gaming-system.

    Crucial C300 128GB
    Intel G2 120GB
    Intel 510 120GB

    Guess it's narrowed down to these three, since the Vertex three is month away and also the C400 shouldn't be coming within the next weeks?

    Thanks in advance for any opinions on this :)

    Kind regards,
    Gsus
    Reply
  • princekermit - Friday, March 04, 2011 - link

    I have the C300 128 and I am very pleased with it. Reply
  • RealGsus - Thursday, March 03, 2011 - link

    Hi guys,

    I really hope you can help me out. I'm putting together a new system and am looking for a new SSD. I've been awaiting the arrival of the new intel drive, but I'm a little disappointed with its performance.

    So I'm wondering which would be the best choice for a pretty much gaming-system.

    Crucial C300 128GB
    Intel G2 120GB
    Intel 510 120GB

    Guess it's narrowed down to these three, since the Vertex three is month away and also the C400 shouldn't be coming within the next weeks?

    Thanks in advance for any opinions on this :)

    Kind regards,
    Gsus
    Reply
  • Sampleboy - Thursday, March 03, 2011 - link

    Any chance we could get the benchmarks for the OCZ RevoDrive X2 thrown into the mix for comparison? It's about the same price point now as the Intel 510 so I'm debating between the two. Reply
  • hyperasus - Thursday, March 03, 2011 - link

    I do not understand why Anand didn't include the latest Corsair drives in this review. Has Corsair done something to offend AnandTech? Reply

Log in

Don't have an account? Sign up now